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The Prescribers

What Doctors Are Prescribing

Never-before-released government prescription records shows that some doctors and other health professionals across the country prescribe large quantities of drugs known to be potentially harmful, disorienting or addictive for their patients. And officials have done little to detect or deter these hazardous prescribing patterns. Medicare’s failure to monitor what doctors are prescribing has wasted billions of taxpayer dollars on excessive use of brand-name medication and exposed the elderly and disabled to drugs they should avoid.

Medicare’s Drug Program Needs Stronger Protections Against Fraud, Watchdog Says

A new report finds that more than half of insurance companies in Medicare’s drug program haven’t reported fraud cases to the government. The findings echo an earlier ProPublica investigation that found fraud flourishing in the program.

Some Predictions on How Medicare Will Release Physician Payment Data

Medicare will soon begin to release data about how much it pays doctors. The details are still unknown, but three recent projects offer some clues.

No Easy Definition for 'Abusive' Prescribing

As Medicare considers banning doctors who pose a “threat to the health or safety” of patients, it plans to consider an array of factors.

In A Major Shift, Medicare Wants Power to Ban Harmful Prescribers

Action follows ProPublica’s investigative series detailing inappropriate and wasteful prescribing, fraud in the nation’s biggest prescription drug program.

Caught Up in a Medicare Drug Fraud

The long list of medications on Joyce Heap’s insurance forms didn’t look right. It turns out they weren’t — and Medicare didn’t seem to care.

Medicare Moves to Tighten Oversight of Prescribers

Action comes after ProPublica uses the government’s own data to find patterns of dangerous prescribing, waste and potential fraud in Medicare Part D.

Senators Press Medicare for Answers on Drug Program

They ask federal officials to take a hard look at Medicare’s popular prescription drug program after ProPublica reports about fraud and waste that have cost taxpayers billions.

‘Let the Crime Spree Begin’: How Fraud Flourishes in Medicare’s Drug Plan

The federal government does little to stop schemers from stealing from Medicare Part D, the program that provides prescription drugs to more than 36 million seniors and disabled people.

Generic or Name-Brand? 10 Docs Talk About Picking Drugs

With billions in potential savings for Medicare at stake, we asked drug experts and practitioners alike why more doctors don’t recommend generics when they can.

How Prescriber Checkup Can Help You

How We Analyzed Medicare Data

Questions About Our Medicare Data

Medicare’s Failure to Track Doctors Wastes Billions on Name-Brand Drugs

The failure to track doctors who shun cheaper generics racks up huge costs for taxpayers in Medicare Part D, which fills one of every four U.S. prescriptions.

Why You Should Care About the Drugs Your Doctor Prescribes

Patients currently have to rely on trust that their doctors prescribe them the right drugs. Our new tool, Prescriber Checkup, for the first time allows patients to see how health care providers stack up with peers.

A Rap Sheet For Medicare’s Prescription Drug Program

An update on the new events since we published our Prescriber Checkup investigation.

Senator Asks States If They Alert Medicare to Problem Physicians

Citing a ProPublica investigation, Iowa Republican Charles Grassley said that if Medicaid and Medicare don’t share information on bad doctors, patients could be at risk.

Top Medicare Official: ‘We Can and Should Do More' to Oversee Drug Plan

Under pressure, Medicare's director tells a Senate panel the agency will intensify the search for abusive prescribing patterns and undertake other reforms.

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